“Yet your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.” (Gen. 3:16)
“A woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet.” (1 Tim. 2:11-12)
When Adam and Eve were created, God gave Adam everything his eyes beheld with the exception of a solitary tree, in a spacious garden no doubt filled with many trees. Of the fruit of that tree alone God forbade Adam to eat. Then God created Eve, so Eve didn’t yet exist when God commanded Adam concerning the tree. Yet, when the Serpent arrived on the scene it became obvious Adam and Eve had discussed it because she recited God’s command to him. In this infamous engagement, there were three occurrences of note revealing a pattern that has plagued mankind ever since. They were instrumental in bringing about “the fall” of God’s perfect creation, and we are witnessing them increasingly in play today.
First, why did the Serpent go after Eve? Satan is no fool, nor is he ignorant of God’s activities. He knew the man was in charge of keeping the command. Why would he then not go after Adam? He knew something about man, and woman, and just how to play upon their weaknesses. The reason for what he did, and who he approached, would soon be revealed. Second, for because of those weaknesses the woman did not defer to Adam. She did not say, “Ask Adam, for God gave him the command,” which is what she should have done. Eve knew it was not her place to lead this discussion, but something God would also later reveal about her and her daughters to come would answer that question. Third, the Serpent knew something about Adam as well—something, again, God would later reveal about him and his sons to come that kept him from stepping up and answering the Serpent himself, which is what he should have done.
After the fall, God reveals the reasons the Serpent went after Eve, why she did not defer to Adam, and why he did not step up and answer his responsibilities. I find it interesting God addressed Eve and Adam in the same order the Serpent did, as we read in Genesis 3, “Yet your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.” This verse always eluded me. I thought, so what? So, Eve would love her husband and he would be the head of her? Sounded pretty biblical to me. That was until It was pointed out to me that word “desire” was used only one other time in the OT, in Genesis 4 during a discussion between God and Cain, “And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door and its desire is for you, but you must master it.”
This is no loving desire. No, this is an evil desire to “run after or over” something belonging to someone else. It is a longing to usurp and overcome, much like Lucifer’s desire to usurp the throne of God, and sin’s constant desire to take over our spiritual life with the desires of the flesh. We see this desire very apparent in relationships between men and women ever since. The women want to take over control of the relationship, however, if the man allows them to gain control the woman hates it. Deep within, she knows it is her cursed state to gain such a victory, and it results in her disrespecting her man and living in her fallen state. But isn’t wanting something even though we know it’s wrong the nature of temptation and sin? It has been the curse of the daughters of Eve ever since the garden to “desire” the man’s role as head of the household, when she was not chosen or equipped for that by God. And that is precisely why the Serpent chose Eve to deceive in the Garden that fateful day.
The daughters of Eve were special, and very much needed in God’s plan for His creation, as long as they remembered to be man’s helper and not his competition or his ruler. Paul made clear in the verse from 1 Timothy above the daughters of Eve had their boundaries when he said, “But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man.” No more than Cain was to allow evil’s desire to master him, so the daughters of Eve need to recognize their fallen nature and refuse to allow their desire to usurp man’s position to master them.
How is the desire of Eve affecting us today? We see in the world in general women abandoning their righteous calling and completely giving in to their desire to rule. They protest man’s headship of God’s creation in about every way possible, the newest one being “toxic masculinity” now being embraced by many universities across this country. What that means is any man thinking he is different than women, and especially to exercise any authority over her, is a toxic caveman and needs to be reprogrammed. Hollywood is contributing, with every manner of super-women tossing men around like match-sticks appearing on the silver screen, including the new Captain America being a woman. Really? Captain America?
Much worse, we see the desire of Eve in the church where it’s now commonplace to see women pastors leading congregations of temple worshippers. While I have no problem with women leading other women, and I have no problem with them writing books, serving in the church, etc, they are not to lead men. Why? God sewed women up to be gatherers. Men are to be explorers. God sewed women up to be nurturers, while men are to be warriors! Women operate largely from intuition and feelings, while men operate from command. Women are far more apt to write their own rules as they go along depending upon feelings, like Eve did in the Garden, while men want a clear command and depend upon logic to follow it.
What about Adam? To the man God said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat from it,’ cursed is the ground because of you. In toil you will eat of it all the days of your life…By the sweat of your face you will eat bread.” Did you catch that? God was saying, “I created you first, gave you the command, and ordained you to lead Eve, but you abandoned your God-given position and listened to her rather than to Me. You abandoned your post and let her lead!”
Like Eve, God revealed Adam’s fallen state in the Garden, along with the reason the Serpent ignored him there. What is notable is not what Adam did in the Garden, but what he didn’t do: much of anything. Adam was given the command before Eve was even created. And when God came looking for them in the Garden after the fall, He called out to Adam alone. Adam was “there with Eve” while she was being deceived, and he did nothing. He stepped back when he should have led. Eve led when she should have stepped back. The result of this was disaster.
How do you curse a passive man? God’s curse upon His passive man was to put him to work, which is the first thing He did with Adam when He “placed him in the Garden to till it.” God made it clear Adam would need to work at not being passive. He would need to stay active to keep from his fallen state of abandonment of his command, and therefore the many, many commands God gives to man throughout the Scriptures. Nonetheless, God did not strip Adam from his position of leadership, because He had sown him up to logically keep commands and not allow feelings to dilute them.
Let me conclude by saying the blame for the current fallen state of both man and woman falls solidly at the feet of Adam and his sons. You see, if man answers the call to his anointed position of leader, protector, and rock of his family Eve naturally stays in her anointed state of helper and nurturer. But if the man follows the lead of Adam in the Garden and steps back, the vacuum in leadership created literally sucks Eve in to her “desire.” So, you see men, God said you would lead, and you will lead. You will either lead your Eve into her blessed state because you are walking in yours, or you will lead her in to her cursed, fallen state because you are walking in yours.
The result of the passivity of Adam and the desire of Eve today will be the same as it was in the Garden: disaster. We are already seeing the results of it in the world and the church. It has resulted in a world being increasingly run by feelings rather than the rule of law and logic. It has likewise manifested itself in religion, through our temples becoming all about gathering and nurturing inside the walls rather than going outside the walls and practicing radical faith.
I am also witnessing it manifested through wives increasingly wanting to “do their own thing,” building their careers and in other ways following their own paths, rather than being the companions to their husbands God intended. I believe we will see the already tragic separation and divorce statistics grow increasingly worse, in both religion and the world, as the last days draw nearer unless the sons of Adam step up their game and the daughters of Eve forsake whatever hold they have gained and submit.
A few weeks back I wrote about Matthew 24, where Jesus said nation would arise against nation and kingdom against kingdom. God had revealed to me the word “kingdom” was the same word used throughout the NT for the kingdom of God and of heaven. What Jesus was saying was “realm would be arising against realm!” I believe what we are witnessing today with the daughters of Eve arising to take their desires and fall to their curse is all part of these realms colliding. On the other hand, I see God calling out His men from their hibernation to recapture the spiritual ground that has been lost. This will cause considerable chaos in families where the daughters of Eve have been allowed to rule.
Men, time to get with God and renew broken and diluted commitments to be the leaders of the church and your households, becoming again men your wives can admire and respect. Women, as God instructed Cain, “Your desire is crouching at the door, but you must master it.” We’ve all got a lot of work to do if we want to take back the territory we have surrendered to the enemy in our marriages and our relationships. But make no mistake, sons of Adam the blessing of Eve starts with us!